By Olayinka Olawole
Delta Queens goalkeeper, Rita Akarekor’s dream of scoring a goal in the NWPL eventually came to pass after she netted home from the spot- kick in her club’s 2-0 victory over visiting Adamawa Queens in the week 5 encounter of the Nigeria Women Premier League played at the Kwale Township Stadium, Delta State.
The Super Falcons goalkeeper boldly stepped forward to take the kick from the spot – despite interest from her teammate Rosemary Afarrah – after an Adamawa Queens defender had brought down her teammate Mary Ann Ezeanagu inside the 18yard box.
Akarekor sent her opposite number the wrong way and thus became the first goalkeeper to score a goal in the new Nigeria Women Premier League (NWPL) since its inception four years ago.
A visibly excited Akarekor Rita told us about how she felt after converting the kick and her thoughts before taking the penalty.
“I actually dreamt of scoring for my team and I thought the penalty was a great opportunity to do that. It’s a case of someone’s dream coming true.”
“When Mary Ann was brought down inside the 18yard box and the referee signalled for a penalty, I said to myself, ‘this is a golden chance to score’.
“As I was running towards the other goal post to try and see if I can be allowed to take the spot kick, Rosemary Afarrah was already with the ball preparing to take it and I had to beg her to allow me to take the kick,” the former Osun Babes goalie said.
“She was surprised and initially thought I was joking about taking the spot-kick. But based on what she knew I could do, she allowed me to take it and I am so glad I didn’t let them down.”
She finally said she hopes to score more goals for her team, not just through penalties but also through open play as the league continues this mid-week, Delta Queens will be travelling to Osogbo to battle Osun Babes FC in the week 6 encounter of the NWPL.